Factors affecting universal precautions compliance

Patricia M. McGovern, Donald Vesley, Laura Kochevar, Robyn R.M. Gershon, Frank S. Rhame, Elizabeth Anderson

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

19 Scopus citations


This study characterizes levels of self-reported compliance with Universal Precautions (UP) among health care workers (HCWs) at risk of bloodborne exposure. A convenience survey was conducted of 1135 health care workers, expected to be at high risk for transmission of bloodborne pathogens. Using a cross-sectional design and a theoretical model by Gershon et al. (1995) data were analyzed with logistic regression. Factors associated with at least one of the two measures of HCW compliance with UP included longer tenure in one's job, increased knowledge of human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) transmission, a conservative attitude toward risky behaviors, a perception of a strong organizational safety climate, and having had some training in the use of personal protective equipment. Knowledge of factors associated with compliance helps to explain why health care workers sometimes exhibit poor compliance despite the real occupational hazard posed by exposure to bloodborne pathogens.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)149-161
Number of pages13
JournalJournal of Business and Psychology
Issue number1
StatePublished - 2000

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
This study was funded, in part, by ERC, Inc. Address correspondence to Patricia McGovern, University of Minnesota, School of Public Health, Mayo Building, Box 807, 420 Delaware St., SE, Minneapolis, MN 55455.


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